Has anyone tried this? The other wines served at the Berlin state banquet seem reasonable (2003 Hochheimer Kirchenstuck Riesling Spatlese and 2013 Oppenheimer Kreuz Spatburgunder). The Ahr is from Weingut Nelles, and according to the website 17.5%, fortified, port style Spatburgunder.
I have not, but clearly want to now.
I think this vineyard has now been taken over by Kunstler, which is a provider the Society is stocking. There is a different Kunstler spatlese on sale at the moment, but maybe worth looking out for this one in future.
The Society did list the 2015 Kunstler Hochheimer Kirchenstuck Beerenauslese over the last year or so. Not cheap, and it obviously didn’t sell quickly, but it was magnificent…
I have never had a fortified Ahr Pinot Noir, but I have had an auslese Ahr PN. I imagine the fortified version could have been more or less sweet than my auslese, depending on the stage at which the spirit was added.
What was it like? It’s a bit hard to describe, but I wouldn’t say it had much of any distinctive PN characteristics about it. Perfectly pleasant in its own way, and for all I know it might have developed some distinctive characteristics with more bottle age. With a sample of only one, it’s impossible to comment on that. I’m not sure the VFM ratio was particularly favourable.
But here’s a fun fact. Pinot noir is a permitted variety for making red port, so technically you could find a fortified PN from the Douro being sold as a vintage port! Nobody is likely to do that of course (the variety is listed as “average” for port making) but still…
(edited to add - apologies, I should have called the grape Spaetburgunder, which is of course the same thing)
On hols in the N German plain last year: saw some auslese P.N. in the wine shop but didnt buy 'cos it was a tad expensive & post brexit HM Customs was a concern. I’ve since regretted that decision and wondered what it might have been like ?
Well, if mine was typical (?), imagine an auslese but with the added component parts (e.g. softish tannins) you would expect from a nondescript sort of red wine grape.
I have a sneaking suspicion that German winemakers make these things because they can, and most are sold to passing tourists.
Well, yes I was a passing tourist, but I have bought PN auslese and if you get it from a producer whose normal PN is good, it can be good: sweet, but still lots of the grape flavour, and not cloying. But I have never seen it fortified.
That’s a useful data point to add. I guess if they have got the production of the dry PN sorted, there is at least a good chance of quality starting materials for a QmP version.